Pallone di Gravina
Place of Origin
Pallone di Gravina is a traditional cheese produced not only in the town of Gravina, but also in other territories of Alta Murgia and in province of Matera.
It has a spherical shape, similar to Caciocavallo but without the head, with a smooth hard rind of a dark straw colour. Inside is hard, stringy, with a light colour that tends to get darker with ageing. Weight may vary between 1.5 to 2.5 kilos.
It is produced between January and March, when milk is tastier thanks to the green grass.
Preparation is made by bringing milk to temperature and adding calf rennet. Once the cheese is ready it is collected and, when it reaches the right acidity, cut into slices and worked in hot water. At this point the cheese is shaped and allowed to dry for 15 days.
Its seasoning takes place in natural cellars or tufa caves that give the cheese a unique aroma. Longer maturing period of the product give it a more spicy flavour with scents of caramel and herbs typical of the area.
This cheese can be used to flavour dishes or eaten fresh as a starter.
When added to hot food it melts by adding a characteristic and distinctive flavour.
It pairs well with full-bodied red wines such as Castel del Monte Rosso DOCG, also Riserva, and Salice Salentino Rosso DOP.